14 June 2007
Maps in the American Memory Collection at Library of Congress
One of the genealogists' most useful of tools are maps. Many are only available in print form on paper. However, a number of railroad (and other) maps have been digitized and are available online via the American Memory Collection at the Library of Congress.
These maps are high quality scans and may contain place names and spelligns not indicated elsewhere.
The 1855 map on the left shows where I live (ok, my town was not formed yet, but I live in some of the "blank" space). Those familiar with the area know that "Galvy" is actually Galva and I never knew Altona (handwritten in no less) was known as Walnut.
This map is "D.B. Cooke & Co's railway guide for Illinois shewing all the stations with their respective distances connecting with Chicago" and was published in 1855. There are many ways to browse the Railroad Maps Collection, but I prefer geographically. If you have not given these maps a try, I would definitely encourage you to do so.